CHESTERTOWN—Kitty Winn will visit Washington College on Tuesday, October 19 for a special showing of the movie for which she earned Best Actress at the 1971 Cannes Film Festival. The Panic in Needle Park, in which she plays Helen opposite Al Pacino’s Bobby, will be shown at 4 p.m. in Norman James Theatre, followed by a Q&A session.
A veteran performer who has appeared in dozens of movies, stage plays and television episodes, Winn is best known for that winning portrayal of Helen, a young homeless woman who falls in love with a handsome hustler and follows him into the depths of drug addiction. Played out on the streets of New York, the grim love story has been praised for its realistic presentation of the drug culture and the psyche of the junkie. Directed by Jerry Schatzberg and produced by Dominick Dunne, the film was based on the book by James Mills, with screenwriting by Joan Didion and John Gregory Dunne.
In addition to the Cannes honor, Winn’s performance as Helen made Premier Magazine’s 2006 list of the “100 Greatest Performances of All Time.” Other roles included Sharon in The Exorcist, and Marianne Whitman in Mirrors. She also appeared as Ophelia in a well-known 1972 New York production of "Hamlet" that also starred Stacy Keach, Colleen Dewhurst and James Earl Jones.
Hosted by the Drama Department, the movie and discussion are free and open to the public.